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Blue Wave and Manu'a's beaches

Two beaches in American Samoa, both in the Manu'a Islands, are listed are listed as “Blue Wave”, according to the annual list released this week by the Clean Beaches Coalition.

This is the second year in a row that Ofu Beach and Olosega Beach, both part of the National Park of American Samoa, have been listed in the "Blue Wave" and are “officially certified as clean, healthy and environmentally well managed”.

The executive director of American Samoa Visitor’s Bureau, David Vaeafe told Samoa News yesterday, “Because the two beaches are again on the list, it once again highlights the pristine beaches of Ofu and Olosega Islands,” and “People will remember it and it creates a desire for them to want to visit the Manu’a Islands.”

"And for American Samoa as whole, it's excellent publicity and it's a great thing for us,” Vaeafe said.

The only set back is transportation to and from Manu’a for tourists and locals alike. “There is transportation service to and from Manu’a but frequency of service in getting tourists there is a minor set back,” Vaeafe said. 

“There is accommodation on Ofu and we do promote all of the Manu’a Islands in our brochure along with other elements in the island group such as the National Park of American Samoa.”

Three years ago, the travel site, Photos4Travel named Ofu as one of the five “best undiscovered beaches in the world”.

According to the Coalition, the Blue Wave program is the first environmental certification program for beaches in the U.S and the program is now in its 12th year. The program is recognized as a reliable benchmark for well-maintained beaches and eco-friendly tourism, the coalition said.

To become certified, beaches adhere to best management practices in the following areas: water quality, beach and intertidal conditions, hazards/safety, services, habitat conservation, erosion management, public information and education.  In honor of National Clean Beaches Week, the Coalition is urging beach goers young and old, to remember these simple things at the shore and among them, leave no trace (if you carry it in, carry it out); know your limits (swim, surf, and boat safely); and respect native habitats (wildlife and plants).